European Film Festival at Coimbatore

European Film Festival held in Coimbatore from 8th to 14th march. 25 films were screened during the festival. The venue of the festival was Kumaraguru College of Technology (KCT) and the theme of the festival was “Celebrating Women”. Two different halls have been used to display the films. All of the 25 movies that have been screened have won several awards.

German, Polish, Greek, Slovakian, French and Hungarian movies with English subtitle have been displayed. Lingesh Kalingaraj, the festival’s event manager said before the festival begins that “The movies will showcase the different shades and narratives of women”. And we have seen that the purpose of the festival has been fulfilled.

The festival started on the evening of 8th march with the screening of “The House’ a Slovakian” film that was directed by Zuzana Lova. It was a story of a school girl Eva who tries to escape from father who is vigilant about his daughter. Other movies include “Take My Eyes” (Spanish), “It’s a Jungle Out There” (German) and “Roads and Orange”. The stories of the films deal with serious issues, including corruption, poverty to everyday struggle.

“The House” is a Slovakian film released in 2011. The film shows a story of a teenage girl who was shown as struggling to deal with her overbearing father. Her father was building a house for his daughter EVA who had a different life plan for herself. Her father abandoned Eva’s sister JANA after she got involved with someone he hates.

“Take My Eyes” directed by Iciar Bollain is a Spanish film that was released in 2003. In this film, a housewife named Pilar fled from home with her 7 year old son and found shelter with her sister.

“The Roads and Oranges” directed by Aliki Danezi-Knutsen is a film from Cyprus, narrating the story to Cyprus based sister.

Two Low-Budget Films Got the Top Prices at Berlin Film Festival

Two low-budget films, one from Bosnia and another from Romania, took the top prices for portrayal of post-communist life at Berlin International Film Festival. The Golden Bear, Berlinale’s first price, was awarded to the Romanian film Pozita Copilului which is a documentary style film. The English name of the film is Child’s Pose and it was directed by Calin Peter Netzer. The film is a story that tells a mother’s desperate and illegal attempts to save her child from prosecution.

The director said “Moral malaise of Romania’s corruption-ridden middle classes”. It also fitted the festival’s penchant for delivering contemporary social drama with a strong political message.

An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker, Bosnian Documentary Drama, won 2 prices. Nazif Mujic won the Silver Bear, best actor award.

The best screenplay award in the festival went to Parde, by the dissident Iranian directors Jafar Panahi and Partovi. Parde was made secretly because the director Panahi had been banned by Tehran. It tells the tale of a group of people trapped in a house by a lake.

The award was accepted by Partovi on the behalf of himself and Panani who is now under house arrest. Happy Partovi said that “it’s impossible to stop a poet and a thinker. Their thoughts will bear fruit everywhere”.

Silver Bear for best actress award went to Paulina Garcia for her role in the Sebastian Lelio’s Gloria, an intimate portrait of a society trapped in its grim fascist past.

A heartfelt documentary, Gold by Michael Hammon that intimately followed the lives of 3 Paralympinas who competed in London 2012, might gone away with empty hand, however, proved to be favorite by audience.

Child Pose and Iron Picker have been praised by all. Some magazine’s critic said that amateur actors and only 17000 Euro are enough to beat arthouse productions.

Critics are worried about the future of French Movies

When the government got involved in the production of movies everyone was so excited about the outcome. Scenario been changed in a while, the whole industry and art has become a matter of politics. Till now politics were far away from public eyes but were brought to the fore last week when producer Vincent Maravel stated, Actors are being paid too much! The article has become fuel for many debates.

According to Vincent most of the high budget French films are money losers. Producers are investing too much money in films production but films aren’t able to generate enough money in returns. Indirect subsidy not the direct subsidy is responsible for this money losing.

Television programmers compete in the widest market so they depend on the mercy of the celebrity actors. Channels cannot just walk away from bad deals because of the mandate of invest. Television’s financing plays important role in the budget so even amateurs are in the same line.

Vincent Maravel suggested limit payroll of the actors will help to solve the issue. If anyone wants higher payroll then he/she should be paid by private funding. Most often actor’s salaries raise the budget of films.

There’s gap between the rich and poor. His article just raises the wave and showed the debate to public eyes. This shouldn’t reflect badly on the whole French cinema but the system has made film making threatened. Only a few years back, French films were best in the world and now whole scenario is upside down. European Commission gave free market dogma which leaves negative influence in the industry and today’s film making is severely affected by it.

Best European Films of 2012

Another great year is passed and European directors have delivered lots of outstanding films. From a long list we’ve gathered best European films of this year in here.

Michael Haneke’s “Amour” is the most appealing film of 2012. This film has won the Palme d’Or at Cannes as well as the top four European film awards. In this film Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva used their excellent performing ability to show what happens to a long and harmonious marriage when the wife suffers a series of debilitating strokes. This film will definitely make you think about the vicissitudes of the human experience.

‘Argo’ is a tale of a breakneck, directed and starring by Ben Affleck came in Warner Bros. banner. It’s consist detail about how a crack CIA agent rescued six Americans from the jaws of the Iranian Revolution. In his way of saving he got help from the good folks of Hollywood. He made it possible with cent percent dedication and passion.

‘The Gatekeepers’ and ‘The Law In These Parts’ is an Israeli documentary published in Sony Pictures Classics banner. In these documentaries you’ll experience the truth behind the mask of the state. After watching these two films, you’ll definitely see the world from a different angle.

‘Abraham Lincoln, The Vampire Hunter’ is another great film of this year, directed by Steven Spielberg in the banner of 20th Century Fox. In this film, Steven Spielberg turns on a dime and delivers his most restrained, interior film and Daniel Day-Lewis surpasses even himself and allows us to see a celebrated figure in ways we hadn’t anticipated.

Our last addition in the list is the ‘Rust and Bone’. This film is romantic as well as pitiless and fearlessly emotional as well as edgy. Outstanding filmmaking by Jacques Audiard and excellent performance from Marion Cotillard and Matthias Schoenaerts.

European Film Festival: Festive Moods in Sudan

As a film lover (I can surely call myself that) I prioritize European film festival to its utmost honor. In my opinion it is the most prestigious film festival in the world and has been celebrating in a festive manner in recent years. The inauguration of fourth European film festival was held at Khartoum in Sudan on 20th of November (Tuesday). This festival was launched by Ahmed Bilal Osman, the honorable Minister of Culture and Information at the offices of the European delegation.

This festival will feature reputed films from France, Austria, United Kingdom, Turkey, Sweden, Switzerland, Spain, Norway, Netherlands, Poland, Italy, Greece and Austria. And for first time, 7 Sudanese films will be shown in this festival.

The duration of this European film festival is from 21 November to 2 December. Between these dates 20 European films will be shown. These also include the Oscar winning French silent film “The Artist”.

Launching the festival in Sudan was a big step taken jointly by European Union and The Govt. of Sudan. It was a token of exchanging culture between Europe and Sudan. Europe is also taking part in funding of cultural projects in Sudan. The initiative taken by European Union was very warmly praised by Minister Ahmed Bilal Osman. He also said that cinema was an important art form.

In this festival, many European film directors were present to attend the screenings and answer questions from the audience. Lilli Kobler, the Director of German cultural center was also present at the event. After many preparations finally European film festival starts with a big hope to spread the aroma of European films throughout Africa.

Refreshing Lineup in the Present years Europe on Screen festival

‘Europe on Screen’ film festival is one of the leading film festivals for the European films. For the first time, it was held in 1990 but after that a long nine years gap. For the second time this festival was held at 1999. From 2003 it’s being annually held in Indonesia as ‘Europe n Screen’. This year’s festival offers 50 films from 31 European countries.

Each and every year organizers try to reach more people and entertain them in the best possible way. This year’s program is more colorful and comes with variety. 50 films with the theme of love, family, rejection and hatred, crossing cultural boundaries will be exhibited in this festival.

The main intention of the festival is to extend the audience of the European films. Every year hundreds of films are released in Europe but the audiences have the wrong impression about European films and put their interest in Hollywood films. Organizers refer European films as entertaining rather than ‘no ending’ or ‘an open ending’ or are ‘heavy’ or there is ‘lots of talking’ and it’s the duty of European film festival to change the bad image.

This year films have been divided into Xtra, Discovery and Docu sections. Xtra section is filled with high profile box office hits film Rare Exports, award winning Amour and many more top profile films. Organizers put interesting themed films whose film production is almost unheard in the Discovery section. Most of the films in this section was only acknowledged in many film festivals.

The Docu section is the place for documentaries. Through this section officials of this festival are trying to show that documentaries can also be entertaining as the fictional films. This year’s ‘Europe on Screen’ will also feature a Short film Competition for the Indonesian filmmakers.

First Ever Egyptian Film Festival in Luxor this September

The first ever Luxor Egyptian and European Film Festival will be held on 17-22 September. Various governmental personals, sponsors from Egypt’s culture and tourism scene will organize this festival in collaboration with Noon Foundation of Culture and Art. Noon Foundation was working for two years to make it happen and finally they have become successful.

This festival will be organized with the aim to foster cultural dialogue between Egypt and Europe. The historic capital of world Luxor will scatter its magical element. This festival will be the great opportunity for locals who are just confined in them and unaware about the other cultures in Europe.

This Film Festival will present several Egyptian films. Films from United Kingdom, Germany, Serbia, Greece, Finland, Estonia, Portugal, France, Spain, Sweden, Italy, Poland, Czech Republic, Macedonia, Belgium, Russia, Holland, Ireland, Switzerland and Romania will also be displayed alongside with Egyptian films.

Organizers also arranged other activities rather than films featuring. A feature film competition will be held and a short film competition. Also screening of Egyptian films shot in Luxor, several symposiums on cinema-related topics and a special tribute to British cinema will be featured. A group of Egyptian and European journalists, directors and producers will be in the jury board.

Luxor’s temples and Karnak will be used for the grand opening and closing ceremony. Visitors from all across world can enjoy Luxor antiquities for free during festival period. Feature film festival will start on 18th Sept. just after screening of After the Battle by Yosry Nasrallah, Cannes Film Festival award winning Egyptian film.

In an intention to bring back the old cultural habit organizers have decided to screen 35mm films in an open air program which used to be the screened in most cinema hall of Egypt during 50s and 60s. This unique idea will bring more visitors and also it’ll give the natives a touch their past cultural history.

Interesting and Most Promising Spanish Films of 2012

In 2012 like other European countries lots of interesting and breath taking movies are in the release list from Spanish. The amount of Spanish Horror Movies every year is really astonishing. Here, we will discuss about most highly anticipated Spanish movies of this year.

1. The Impossible – Lo imposible: Directed by Spanish filmmaker Juan Antonio Bayona. This film is based on a true story about a family get caught with thousands of strangers in 2004 Tsunami. After his great success with suspense thriller El Orfanato – The orphanage in 2009 this he wanted Hollywood stars Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor to act in this film. The Impossible will be released in 11 October 2012.

2. [REC3] Genesis: Success continues for the trequel of one of the most successful Spanish films Rec. Like previous two director Paco Plaza has done outstanding job with this third one also. This film is based on the story of a couple’s wedding day which turns into a horrific events as some of the guests start showing signs of a strange illness. Genesis was released in 30 March 2012.

3. The Red Lights: Released in 3 May 2012, directed and written by Spanish filmmaker Rodrigo Cortés. The story begins with Psychologist Margaret Matheson and her assistant study paranormal activity, which leads them to investigate a world-renowned psychic who has resurfaced years after his toughest critic mysteriously passed away. American movie star Robert DeNiro is in this film as Simon Silver.

4. Casa De Mi Padre: Released in Mexico on 11 May 2012, directed by Matt Piedmont. This film is based on a story of Alvarez brothers who are on the way to save their father’s ranch, find themselves in a war with Mexico’s most feared drug lord. Will Ferrell, Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna is in the main characters of this comedy film.

Best European Films of Decade

Europe is the birthplace of theatre art and modern films. They perfectly represent the culture, way of living and charisma in dramatic themes through their films. European films are the running portrait of their daily living life or any important events. European film industry have already produced and still producing outstanding films through decades. Here we’ll discuss on some best European films of this decade.

1. AMÉLIE (2001): Directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet based on story of an innocent girl. Movie story runs on how a naive Paris lives with her own way of justice. She helps the people around her to decide and in her way of living discovered and fall in love. It was written by Guillaume Laurant, declared as the Best Film award in European Film Awards. Also won four César Awards, two BAFTA Awards and was nominated for five Academy Awards.

2. PAN’S LABYRINTH (2006): Written and directed by Guillermo del Toro based on a story In the fascist Spain of 1944, the bookish young stepdaughter of a sadistic army officer escapes into an eerie but captivating fantasy world. It was premiered at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival. It won three Academy Awards, three BAFTA Awards including Best Film Not in the English Language and numerous international awards.

3. LET THE RIGHT ONE IN (2008): Directed by Tomas Alfredson and this film is about Oscar, an overlooked and bullied boy, finds love and revenge through Eli, a beautiful but peculiar girl who turns out to be a vampire. This film is based on the ‘Let the Right One In’ novel of John Ajvide Lindqvist. This film won Founders Award for Best Narrative Feature, Best European Fantastic Feature Film, four Guldbagge Awards and numerous awards.

4. THE LIVES OF OTHERS (2006): Directed and written by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck about an agent of the secret police, conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover, finds himself becoming increasingly absorbed by their lives in 1984 East Berlin. In 2006 it won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. With other numerous awards this film won seven Deutscher Filmpreis awards and 11 nominations.

Chris Marker, an Indefatigable European Film and Video Maker

In making of European films Chris Marker is one of the most immense talents, curious spirit, and a secret person and had outstanding influence. In the Age 0f 91 on 30th July, 2012 he passed away. In his six decades career he made over 50 films, which inspired many of young generation in anti-colonial politics and many more will be. In 1962 he made La Jetee (The Pier), a short film based on a story of a survivor of future war. This soldier travelled back from future to relieve his own death. With this outstanding film he gained huge popularity.

He is also popular for his documentaries. In 1961, he made one on profile of Fidel Castro and Cuban revolution, named Cuba Si. Along with other European directors he protested American invasion in Southeast Asia. He directed a documentary named Loin du Vietnam (Far From Vietnam) in 1967. This French film maker won heart of millions by Le fond de l’air est rouge (A Grin without a Cat) in 1977 which perfectly reflected the revolutionary events on May 1968.

For promoting French film making he spent his several years of works. On profile of Kurosawa he released a documentary in 1985. This talented director released his last short film in 2007. He released it in internet and just after few days it became one of the most viewed documentaries.

All of European film makers paid homage tribute to this intellect. When he took his last breath in his 91st birthday he was in his home in Paris. When most people run after limelight, he respectfully stayed away through his whole life. He was born in Christian-François Bouche-Villeneuve in the wealthy Paris suburb of Neuilly. According to Cinematheque Française this French film maker was a master of poetic film making.